Messages from a Fortune Cookie


Tonight my wife and I found ourselves childless. It was not planned, so we had not planned anything in particular. However we very quickly took advantage of the situation and went out to dinner. We went to one of our favourite restaurants, the China Tea House in Wanniassa, the service is great and the food is good. Most importantly it was great to be able to spend some one on one time with my wife.

At the end of the meal they bought out the fortune cookies and I quickly grabbed one. The message in my cookie was:

“Good Judgment comes from bad experience, and a lot of that comes from bad judgment”

I was thinking that it this is a great statement. Too often we look at mistakes and bad judgement as a negative, however these are really a positive, as long as we learn from it. Now if the same mistake is made over and over then there is an issue to be dealt with. However an unforseen misjudgement that we learn from is a good thing.

This message also reminds me of another saying “We learn best from mistakes, however it is less painful to learn from other people’s mistakes than your own”. I agree that we learn best from mistakes. In fact I work and have worked in many organisations that have systems and processes in place to capture information about mistakes and lessons learnt for the future. In summary here are a few questions to ask yourself:

Do you beat yourself up when you make a mistake?
Do you learn from mistakes you make?
Do you learn from other people’s mistakes?
What ways to learn from mistakes?

About Attila Ovari

Attila Ovari is an Entrepreneur that loves life and is passionate about adventure. Attila Ovari writes, speaks and coaches to inspire others to better themselves through following their passions and chasing their dreams. He has developed his passions of inspiration, leadership and strategy into strengths through his businesses and community pursuits.

Posted on Friday, 04 Jan 2013, in Uncategorized and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 44 Comments.

  1. I think I’ve appreciated the concept of learning from other people’s mistakes as I’ve gotten older. When I was younger, I think it was more something I needed to learn on my own. People with more experience would warn you about things but you don’t really listen because you haven’t actually experienced the negative outcome. Once I have experienced it, I realize that those who are older have reason to say what they do and I’ll be more apt to listen when it comes to other situations.

    I think learning from mistakes is so important, it makes it so we don’t regret the things we’ve done that may have ben in poor judgement. If we can learn from them to better ourselves in the future, then that failure or falling can in the end be a great thing.

    Thanks for the thought-provoking post 🙂

    And thanks also for subscribing to my blog, I really appreciate it!! I hope you will leave a 10-word-or-less description of your blog that I can add beside your name on my page dedicated to my readers:

    I’d love for ppl to know what your blog is about! Thank you so much!! 🙂

  2. That’s a quality fortune cookie right there – and poignant too. I make the effort to learn from my (and other people’s) mistakes when I can. But sometimes, it is necessary to make your own in order to fully grasp the understanding that arises out of it. And sometimes, the mistakes we think we made turn out not to be mistakes at all; but a means of forcing you down another path that you were resisting.

  3. I always hope others eg my children, will learn from my mistakes.

  4. I often imagine some chap sitting in a factory somewhere making all these fortune cookie lines up. This one makes absolute sense. Good for your Mr. Fortune Cookie Writer, wherever you are!!!

  5. Good lesson for us today. My husband and I work hard to learn from our mistakes, but we do often beat ourselves up a bit too much when we make them. Thank you for the reminder that learning the lessons is as important as letting the mistakes go.

  6. I have learned to laugh at my mistakes and eventually accept it and learn from it. It’s the best way for me to live. I used to freak out over mistakes I made. It made me worse. It made me not so fun to be with. Now, I know when to let go and when to actually pick up the lessons.

  7. Not only do I try to learn from others mistakes, but when something goes wrong in my life I search for the lesson that was meant for me to learn, because you know their is always one!

  8. Do we learn from our mistakes? Sometimes. Do we learn from mistakes of other people? I wish :(. Happy New Year!


  9. Life is constant learning opportunity for me. Ha! That would be a good fortune cookie line, wouldn’t it? 😉 For New Year’s Eve a couple of days ago, I made some fortune cookies. With pieces of paper with clever lines, too! Sadly the recipe wasn’t good. I was unable to give the cookies the typical fortune cookie shape. I was lucky enough to fold them up once or roll them a bit one direction. I learned my lesson: next time new recipe. Even with my sister’s help, who is very experienced with cooking and baking, we were unable to get it right. So it wasn’t my fault. It worked the first time I did it, but I had used another recipe from the internet the first time.

  10. 2012 was filled with mistakes. time to move forward, which is sometimes hard with a heavy load.

  11. I agree with you Attila, mistakes are great learning tools.

  12. what a wonderful break you two received and enjoyed

  13. It sure is a whole lot easier to look back and say I had bad judgement after the fact, as opposed to when I am experiencing the results of bad judgement.

  14. A prerequisite requirement of learning from our mistakes is that we have the self awareness to recognize the mistake as of our own making. Without that awareness there is a tendency to assign the reason for the mistake to some external source, like someone else.

    • Very true Ian, I have seen, like you most likely have, people that blame others for their problems and issues. These people will not learn from the mistakes and will continue to make the same mistake again and again…. For a lesson to be learnt, one has to take responsibility for the situation….

  15. I do get on myself for making mistakes. I have learned more from mistakes and in some cases actually was glad I made them.

  16. I beat myself up for about a minute and then I learn from the error of my ways and move on. Otherwise I would be crazier than I already am. 🙂

  17. Oh yes, I have been known to beat myself hard for mistakes. Certainly have learned from them too. Certainly learned from others’ mistakes too. Glad you found some one-on-one time.

  18. Good blog. Individuals should learn from their mistakes. Knowing history is also important to avoid mistakes.

  19. I hope we don’t need a fortune cookie to help us with that concept… great that you and your wife had a lovely evening together!!!!


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